GTMS Kindergartener Julián will be featured playing drums with the Brazilian band, Alo Brasil, Saturday, February 16. This is a special Carnaval celebration that takes place every year in February.
Alo Brasil welcomes a variety of guest artists and a fun-filled family-friendly evening is planned!
The date: February 16th
Where: World Cafe Live
Link for tickets: http://tickets.worldcafelive.com/default.asp?SearchMonth=2/28/2013&MV=2/16/2013&sel=x
The Philadelphia Museum of Art offers plenty of Family Programs that allow children and parents to learn, create, and most important, have fun together. All programs and events are free. Tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis at the Visitor Services Desk.
“When a free spirit exists, it has to materialize itself in some form of work, and for this the hands are needed. Everywhere we find traces of men’s handiwork, and through these we can catch a glimpse of his spirit and the thoughts of his time. The skill of man’s hand is bound up with the development of his mind, and in the light of history we see it connected with the development of civilization.”~Maria Montessori
The age 5 is a time of mastery, and the kindergarten program at Greene Towne assists this development. This is the time when the children put all the impressions from the language, math, and cultural areas into a more conscious format. The 5-6 year old is ready to consolidate and integrate detail, information, and experience. He/she starts to make comparisons and later can move more readily into abstract thinking.
For example, a 3 or 4 year old can look at a set of geography cards picturing people from different countries. The younger child can realize that the people are different, but it is the 5 year old who begins to realize what is different. It is this developmental readiness that enables our Kindergarten program to provide the opportunity to discover and learn about different cultures and life-styles, draw geography maps, label names of countries, etc.
Moreover, the three-year (or four-year) Montessori program is designed to help children progress from stage to stage in this developmental sequence without interruption or loss of continuity. We build upon what came previously!
Besides allowing for continuous development, the Kindergarten year provides mastery of self. It is one of the few times in life when children can be “top dog” in the classroom and feel the great pride in that esteemed position. The children feel great competence, serving as teachers to the younger children, either directly or by example.
This competence is partly the result of having experienced their own progress in the same setting. They once were the little ones coming into the classroom, learning how to pour juice and roll mats. But now they are the Kindergarten children, who write stories and count the 1000 chain.
This is the age when children master their socializing skills of cooperating, sharing, and taking turns. The Montessori classroom is a community where every child is important. Often, visitors to Greene Towne comment on how kind the older children are to the younger ones. It is a common occurrence to see a 5-year-old helping a 3-year-old with his coat and boots.
When a child leaves this environment after his/her second year and does not continue on in the Kindergarten Year, he/she loses time in this developmental sequence. The energy put into mastery now must be put into adjusting. The transition means adjusting to a new school, new friends, new routines, etc.—and thus interrupts and delays the developmental sequence.
This delay tends to reduce the feelings of mastery and competence at this age. Again, the consolidation of impressions is left at random at this point if a transition occurs. The esteemed position of “top dog” is delayed until the end of grade school since children in other Kindergartens are regarded as the “babies” - they are the youngest, not the oldest.
A child naturally is ready for new challenges at 6, when entry into 1st grade typically occurs. This need to “move on” comes naturally from within the child of 6, while the need at the age of 5 is one to “finish”. The Montessori Kindergarten differs in content and process from other kindergarten programs. In the Montessori program, children learn through concrete materials and through the senses. It is learning by doing, with verbal input integrated into the process. In other programs children are more involved with verbal instruction and much time is spent in helping them listen and follow directions. Greene Towne children have already acquired these skills so they have the opportunity to move on and build upon what has been accomplished in the previous years.
Re-enrollment agreements are due TODAY, February 1! Please return your child’s re-enrollment asap so that we may plan appropriately for next year. Thank you!
Now is great time to start visiting schools as you consider your child’s education after Greene Towne. Winter and Spring Open Houses offer a calm and unhurried way to see schools and some schools will not accept an application or schedule a tour/visit unless you’ve attended an Open House. You can check the schools’ web sites or the free monthly parenting papers: Parents Express and MetroKids, available in the GTMS lobby. If you’d like a copy of the long list of schools that Greene Towne graduates typically go to, please contact us and we can email it to you.
TUESDAY, MARCH 5, 2013, 5:30pm
Applying to First Grade Parent Workshop for parents of the Class of 2014
DVAEYC (Delaware Valley Association for the Education of Young Children) is debuting a new documentary film, "Beyond Babysitting" on Sat., 2/23, at the Bryn Mawr Film Institute. It's a FREE event with a reception in the lobby just prior to the screening. There will be a panel discussion to follow--moderated by Daylin Leach--including a local journalist/mommy blogger ("One Smart Mom"); Phila DA Seth Williams; the CEO of one of region's largest child care providers (Mark Kehoe of Brightside Academy), and my org's community services program manager (and narrator of the film), Tyrone Scott.
You can register here:
Because the theatre holds oh-so-many seats, be sure to register. It also helps with planning for the breakfast reception.
You can see the film trailer here http://www.dvaeyc.org/about/videos/beyond-babysitting.
Picture Day envelopes went home this week. If you didn't get one or misplaced it, we have extra forms at the front desk. Please return the envelopes to the front desk with payment made out to Memory Mate Photo by Monday, January 28.
Make sure to get to school EARLY as we will start taking pics at 9am SHARP or before if a class is ready to go!
On Thursday, January 31, Primary students from Ms. Coulter, Ms. Matsukevich, Ms. Prestas, and Mrs. Pysher's classes will take pictures.
On Friday, February 1, the Toddlers and All Day Montessori classrooms will take pictures.
Toddlers will be dropped off at the Toddler House as usual on their Picture Day. (In the past this has been different.)
Financial Aid applications have been sent home to those families currently receiving assistance. If you anticipate requiring financial assistance for the 2013-14 school year, please contact Erika Goldberg for details at .
The application must be submitted on-line at http://sss.nais.org/schools/ to School and Student Services NO LATER than February 1, 2013 to be considered. There are additional documents required so contact Erika for details.
“Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'”
Martin Luther King, Jr.
“The needs of mankind are universal. Our means of meeting them create the richness and diversity of the planet. The Montessori child should come to relish the texture of that diversity.” Maria Montessori
Montessorians have long recognized the contribution community service has in developing and educating the whole child. It was Dr. Montessori’s vision that a peaceful world, created by children raised with respect to their natural development, would make the world better and more peaceful. Service to the community is a corner stone of this belief and it manifests every day in a Montessori classroom. Students learn the joy of giving of them selves and develop compassion because of these real, practical life experiences. In the Montessori learning community we model and teach students to be stewards and caretakers of the Earth and all its inhabitants. By doing so, we create caring, empathetic students capable of thinking beyond themselves.
"What good shall I do this day?" Benjamin Franklin
Service at School: Community service, in the form of kindness and helpfulness, is accomplished at all levels and in all age groups in the Montessori school. In the Toddler House and 3 to 6-year-old Primary classrooms, children have opportunities every day to assist and serve their classmates. Helping a young friend take off a coat, showing concern for a classmate who misses his parents, reading to a classmate, showing a younger child how to do work, helping a classmate clean up a spill, preparing and serving a snack to others, sorting recycling, and watering plants are just a few of the many ways in which children in a Montessori environment serve others, helping them build a foundation of compassion towards their fellow human beings and establish themselves in a cooperative, respectful community.
As a school community, at GTMS, we also hold a Thanksgiving Food Drive, Holiday Gift Drive, and Lemonade Stand which each benefit local charities. These activities are an integral component of the expanded curriculum our Kindergarten students participate in. Along with art, Lunch-around-the-World, and field trips they open these oldest student’s eyes to the wider world outside the classroom.
"The difference between what we are doing and what we are capable of doing would
solve most of the world's problems." Mahatma Gandhi
Service outside of school: It can be challenging to find opportunities for very young children to participate in service activities outside of school and home but here are a few ways you can honor the spirit of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. every day with your young children.
* Clean out the closets. Children grow quickly and before you know it, clothes, toys, strollers, car seats, and books are outgrown. Gather these up and donate them to a Salvation Army emergency shelter (near us, there is the Salvation Army Eliza Shirley House at 1320 Arch Street; to learn what they need now call 215-686-7150), Ronald McDonald House, the nursery at your place of worship, or simply take them to a thrift store so that another family can continue to enjoy them. Here are some other organizations that appreciate your help:
Youth Service, Inc. in Philadelphia is happy to receive donations at any time of year: www.ysiphila.org.
Cradles to Crayons accepts gently used clothing, new toys and craft items - don’t you have some duplicate gifts? http://philadelphia.cradlestocrayons.org/locations?q=node/54
* Many of us think about those in need at holiday times but in reality many families are hungry all year round and could use help at any time of the year. Take your children to the grocery store and let them help you select a bag of groceries to donate to a food bank or shelter.
Turning Points for Children accepts donations all year and focuses their efforts on Center City Families. You and your child can also help sort donations - which children LOVE to do. Contact Alison Floyd to learn more about how you can help at Turning Points.
Turning Points for Children
415 S. 15th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19146
Northwest Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network welcomes families to cook meals, serve meals, keep a family company in the shelter by bringing games to play, crafts to do and books to read (this is a family friendly opportunity.) http://philashelter.org/how-to-help/volunteer-with-us
* The most meaningful service for children to take part in is to those they know. Do you have an elderly or infirmed neighbor or relative who would appreciate a hot meal or home baked cookies and a visit from a child? Do they have a pet that needs to be walked? Is there a sick friend cooped up indoors that would like some company or simply a card?
* Children can donate a portion of their allowance or do extra chores to “earn” money which can then be donated to a favorite charity. Parents can make a list of charities and talk about the work they do with the child. Then let your child choose which one they want to help. Some good causes for young children are Unicef, Heifer International, Ronald McDonald House, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Children can also participate in fundraising walks throughout the year!
* Plant flowers to beautify a school, park or other community area or clean up a playground (with proper supervision and safety considerations.)
Participating in these activities teaches children that although they are young, they can and do make a contribution to their community.
As you know, we have decided to reflect our dedication to Montessori by including it in our name-Greene Towne Montessori School. Over the course of the next few weeks, we will be switching our email address domains from greenetowneschool.org to gtms.org. (Never fear, any mail sent to the old addresses will forward to the new addresses.)
If you start seeing email from your teachers or admin with the gtms.org domain, it's legit! Be sure to add it to your safe sender lists.
Just a heads up about what's happening at GTMS!
During the Staff In-service on 1/18/13, the teachers had a workshop with Dr. Lisa Dissinger, child psychologist. They discussed child behavior of all types, including bullying.
Speaking of bullying, we will host a book signing of author Emily Bazelon's new book Sticks and Stones: Defeating the Culture of Bullying and Rediscovering the Power of Character and Empathy. Stay tuned for more information, but save the date for the evening of Tuesday, February 26!
Finally, re-enrollment agreements were sent in the mail recently. Please return them by Friday, February 1. Thanks!
TEN STONE BAR & GRILL (back room)
2063 SOUTH STREET
Discounted beers & appetizers will be available
Primary Parent/Child Classroom Visit for First Year Students
5-6pm here at GTMS
This is a great chance to visit the classroom with your child and let them show off their work!
Winter Art Classes still available at the Philadelphia Museum of Art for 3-year-olds!
Click HERE for more info!
Members of the Safety Committee did a walk-through of both GTMS-East and West on December 20th, 2012 with Bob Wilmot, our Safety Consultant. Bob works with the faculty and staff on an annual basis on our Emergency Operations Plan. This is a written document which is required by PAIS, AMS, and DPW. Each year, it is updated and all faculty and staff are trained/re-trained.
First, both buildings were declared safe. We will be doing a second walk through with a representative from our Police District to be sensitive to their systems—all clear communication, etc.
The following items will be areas where we plan to make changes and some of them involve you:
West Building (where Toddler House is located)
Your children’s safety is very important to us. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
Honor the memory of Martin Luther King, Jr. by participating in the 18th Annual Greater Philadelphia Martin Luther King Day of Service. Close to home, members of the Greene Towne Montessori community are invited to come out to Coxe Park for a Playground Clean Up. More details to follow soon.